Friday, November 25, 2011

Choose Your Side: "Tangled Tides" Official Release Celebration

Happy Book Birthday to Tangled Tides and its fabulous author, Karen Amanda Hooper!

Yay! *throws confetti* I’m super excited for Karen. Her first book, the young adult novel Tangled Tides, officially releases today. And to celebrate and show my support/excitement, I’m participating in a war… an Underwater Web War! ;)

Tangled Tides features a variety of mystical and battling sea creatures: merfolk, selkies, sirens, and gorgons. In celebration of the book’s release, Karen is conducting an Underwater Web War between these magical sides. She says she loves them all, but she's making us choose our favorite. So... *drum-roll*

I choose…SIRENS!

The talented Alexandra Shostak created the interior artwork for Tangled Tides.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Pictures, Comments, Images, Graphics

Just wanted to wish all my friends, family, fellow bloggers, and readers a "Happy Thanksgiving"! (And if you're not in the Untied States, then "Happy Thursday"!)

Please stay safe in your travelings and your cooking. Remember to give thanks, and enjoy your family and friends during this holiday time. =D

(Elvish Farewell)

P.S. Come back tomorrow to join in the fun and celebration in honor of the Tangled Tides official release day!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

NaNoWriMo Update

I've been a bad blogger neglecting my poor little blog these past two weeks. The reason...NaNoWriMo! In my last post I explained about my word goals and a brief synopsis of my story. I'm happy to report that besides deciding on a working title ("Source & Sacrifice") that things are going well. I've been not only hitting, but surpassing my daily word goals almost every day this month. By the end of week 2 (which was today), I had hoped to be at 26,000 words. I'm ahead of schedule with just over 29,000! =) The month isn't even halfway over and I'm already to passed the halfway word mark. Huzzah! At this current rate, I should be able to complete at least the 50,000 words by the Thanksgiving holidays, which is good since on that Thursday any writing time will be nonexistent.

Originally I wanted to "win" NaNoWriMo (i.e. make it to 50k words) just to see if I could. It was a personal challenge. And while that is still my main motivation, I have found another "driving force" to push me to finish. NaNoWriMo has various sponsors that support them and offer discounts to the NaNo participants and winners. Last year I didn't really pay attention to the winner prizes and special offers, but this year I decided to look into them and a few writing programs caught my eye. I've always just used Microsoft Word because it was handy, simple, and I understand the format. But I was curious about these other writing programs so I thought I'd look into them more.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

It Has Begun...

So as I mentioned earlier, I'm participating in NaNoWriMo once again this year. Last year was my first time doing it and I had a lot of fun. I didn't make it to the 50,000 word goal, but I didn't expect to make it, so I was thrilled with hitting about 35,000. This year however I want to make it to the 50K mark...mostly just to see if I can.

To help myself get in the mood to write, I've decided to attend more write-ins this year. The first one of the month (at least for my local area) was a midnight write-in at Dragon's Lair (comic book shop). I enjoyed it, meet some new people, and had a rather productive two hours. I wrote over 2000 words! O.O Woo-hoo! I need to write at least 1666 words a day to finish by November 30th, but I'm shooting for a daily word goal between 1800 - 2000 per day. (That way I can make it to the 50K mark faster and not panic on that last day.) So I'm off to a good start for now...

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Beware of Dragons

Welcome, Monster-hunters and fellow Monstrologists!

Today I’m participating in the MonsterFest 2011 blog-hop, hosted by Sommer Leigh at “Tell Great Stories”. (Go check out the details and other participants by clicking the MonsterFest icon in my left sidebar.)

The “monster” I’ve chosen to research and share with you readers is…dragons! While not necessarily a “Halloween-time” monster, dragons have been considered monsters for ages all over the world. Many popular myths, legends, and fairy-tales involve dragons and their species. But what are dragons exactly?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Rule of Three: "Renaissance" (part IV)

Greetings! I'm afraid we have reached the end of our journey, faithful travelers! Thank you from the bottom of my heart for following my characters all month long. It was an awesome experience and I've enjoyed reading all the stories involved. (And in case you still have no clue what I'm talking about: check out the Renaissance post and read the other participants' stories.)

For another chance to read my previous three installments, click on their titles to refresh your memory of my characters: Gwyn's Discovery, Myzukia's Deceit, and Ciaran's Decision. Our final story today will feature all three characters' perspective. Comments and feedback are still welcomed!

And as always: "Everyone has a secret. Welcome to Renaissance. Enjoy your stay."

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Rule of Three: "Renaissance" (part III)

Hello faithful travelers! I'm glad to see you return for another story installment on this "Rule of Three Writing Challenge" blogfest. (For new travelers, check out the Renaissance post for more information and read others' stories as well.)

If you didn't get a chance to read my first two installments, you can read them by clicking their titles: Gwyn's Discovery and Myzukia's Deceit. Today we will hear from a third character in our mysterious tale, Ciaran. Again, please feel free to post comments/feedback.

Take heed: "Everyone has a secret. Welcome to Renaissance. Enjoy your stay."

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Belated Things and NaNoWriMo

So I realized the other day that I missed my one-year blog anniversary back in August. (Wow, I've had this thing for over a year?!) Anywho...

*throws confetti into the air* Happy Belated Blog-versary to me! *sweeps up confetti* Okay, I'm done now...back to my post!

November is right around the corner and do you know what that means? It's time for NaNoWriMo! Yay!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Haunted Halloween: "Walking Home"

Over at Confessions of a Bookaholic and A Life Bound by Books, they are hosting a spooky short story contest as a part of their month-long "Haunted Halloween" extravaganza. (Notice the button in the left sidebar of my blog?) The deadline for entry was October 15th and I just barely made it in time. The judging round starts Sunday October 16, so click here for details and if you enjoy my "spooky tale", please give me a vote. And now...story time!

 ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
"Walking Home"

Nana always warned me there were trolls under bridges…

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Rule of Three: "Renaissance" (part II)

Welcome once again to this stop on the "Rule of Three Writing Challenge" blogfest. I've been enjoying all the entries and am astounded by all the creative writers and approaches in this fest. (If you're just joining us, check out the Renaissance post for more information.)

And in case you missed my first installment of this four-part story, check out Gwyn's Discovery here. This week we will learn more about our story through the eyes of another character, Myzukia. Please feel free to post comments/feedback.

And remember: "Everyone has a secret. Welcome to Renaissance. Enjoy your stay."

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Wind, Water, Fire, and...Yarn?

Last week I received a shiny present in the mail...

*squee* I won this lovely ARC of Rae Carson's new book from the lovely people at Epic Reads. They held a twitter contest for 20 lucky retweeters a few weeks ago. This is a book that has been on my to-read book since I first heard about it! And when my fiancee give me the package from the doorstep, I did a little happy dance! =D

In other news...

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Rule of Three: "Renaissance" (part I)

Welcome to my stop on the "Rule of Three Writing Challenge" blogfest. I signed up for this blogfest last month and have been super excited to read all the other entries. (This blogfest is hosted by Stu Nager - Tale Spinning, Damyanti Biswas - Daily (W)rite, Lisa Vooght - Flash Fiction, and JC Martin - Fighter Writer. Please check out their blogs for more information.)

The goal of this blogfest is to write a four part story revolving around three main characters and occurring in the town of Renaissance. (Renaissance is a fictional shared world created by the bloggers mentioned above.) Each week, the writers involved with the blogfest receive the following week's prompt. So over the month of October I will be posting each installment of my story every Thursday. Please follow me along this new journey. Feel free to post comments/feedback and join me in reading the other participants' stories. (Click this Link for complete List.)

Now remember: "Everyone has a secret. Welcome to Renaissance. Enjoy your stay."

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Austin Teen Book Festival 2011 Recap

On Saturday, I attended the Austin Teen Book Festival...where, as my fiancee explained to a friend, I was pretending to be a "teenager". Actually I wasn't since there were many other adults there too, but there were many many teenagers. And it made me happy to see so many teen readers. The purpose of the festival is to promote teen reading and connnect readers with YA authors, which is exactly what it did.

This is the first of many pictures to come in this post. You have been warned.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

And the Winner Is...

The winner of my Monarch giveaway is...*drum-roll*...

Congratulations! I'll be emailing you soon!

Special thanks to all who entered and help spread the word! (If you still want a chance to win a copy of Monarch, please check Michelle's blog for more giveaways.)

(Elvish Farewell

P.S. I had a terrific time with the TX bloggers I meet last night, and I'm now at the Austin Teen Book Festival! *squee* Check back on Tuesday for my juicy details and pictures!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Austin Teen Book Festival 2011

The Austin Teen Book Festival is a free event connecting teens (and other book lovers) with authors of teen books. Authors will be participating in panels discussing "themed topics" (themes pertaining to their books) as well as signing books and meeting their readers. Books will of course be on sale as well as concessions and souvenirs of sorts.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

In Honor of Banned Book Week (September 24th - October 1st)

"Banned Books Week (BBW) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment. Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States." -- ALA website: Banned Books Week

*steps on soap-box* Whatever side you take on the Banned Book Debt,  it still has an effect on every single one of us. I believe that everyone has the right to choose what they want to read (or watch or listen to or believe in). If they are children or teens, then it should between themselves and their parents. If they are adults, then they should be allowed the choice. If you don't like something, then don't read it. There are several banned or challenged or regular books that I have no interest in reading or didn't like when I did read them. They just aren't "my cup of tea". But my opinion should not prevent others from reading it and making their own choice about it. Of course, I do think that content vs. age appropriatness should be highly considered when choosing what books to teach in schools. Something that is "right" for the average ninth grader is different from your average third grader...and even every "average" ninth grader is different from another. But some kids mature faster than others, so every case should be treated as an individual. *steps down* Alrighty then, "serious" May-Day is done for the day...

Monday, September 26, 2011

"Meet Me Monday" Blog Hop

I don’t normally post on Mondays, but I decided to participate in Rachel Firasek’s first MMM Blog Hop today. On this hop, bloggers will share a little about themselves that their readers/followers might not know about them, and then the readers/followers can share a little about themselves in the comments (if they want). The point is to have fun and learn new things about each other!

Below I have a list of links to all the blogs involved. Go check out as many as you can!

First off, check out my “About Me” page to find out some basic info about me (if you haven’t already). If you want to learn some things that might not come up in my posts or bio page, read on…

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Beware the Wolves: Book Review of Sisters Red

Last post I mentioned the trend of fairy-tales and mythology popping up in books recently, and how many of them are ending up on my to-read list. Well, one of these fairy-tale "revisions" is Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce (whom I also blogged about several posts back). 

I heard about this book because other blogger mentioned Jackson's newest book, Sweetly (a companion book set in the same "fairy-tale" world). I looked up both books on goodreads and instantly fell in love with their covers and concepts. Soon after, Sweetly released and I bought both books on Amazon. (I even got signed book plates for each book from Jackson through a "special contest" she was running the first week of her new release.) And I wasn't disappointed in my purchase!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Mermaids & Gorgons

Earlier this month I won a copy of Karen Amanda Hooper's debut book, Tangled Tides. I was thrilled! (Check out the awesome cover art! And yes, it's about mermaids, selkies, and other fantastical sea-creatures.) I've been a follower of her blog for a while now, even before her book deal. So when she had her first giveaway of her beloved book, I jumped at the chance to enter...and I won! *squee*

Of course, the book was originally scheduled to be released sometime next year, so it'd be a while before I would get it. But Karen recently found out from her awesome publishers (Rhemalda Publishing) that Tangled Tides will be releasing later this year. *double squee* I couldn't be more happy for her (and for myself since I'll be getting my copy sooner than I thought). If you would like a chance to win her sea-creature fantasy novel, check out the international giveaway at GoodReads or click on the widget to your left in my sidebar.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Monarch Blog Tour (Review & Giveaway!)

***Giveaway Now Closed***

Welcome to my stop on the Monarch blog tour! First off, I'd like to say "Happy Launch Day" to Michelle Davidson Argyle, the author of Monarch. Her second novel and debut book from Rhemalda Publishing released today, September 15 2011. 

When Michelle asked for potential reviewers and participants for this tour on her blog, I immediately threw my name into the pile. And I'm glad I did because Monarch is a gritty, detailed, emotional-fueled page-turner! Continue reading to check out the official synopsis, book trailer, my personal thoughts, and a chance to win your own copy from the publisher.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Mushy've been warned!

<.< >.> I have a confession to make...I once read a book in order to talk to a boy. *grasp* *horror* *shock* Okay, so maybe not. Maybe this happens more often than I realize, but as a teenage girl who thought of boys as either good friends or a nuisance, it was a huge deal to me at the time. Perhaps I should explain a little back-story first. (And yes, this post has relevance to today specifically.)

I have always loved fantasy books. It stems from my love of fairy tales as a small child, which then lead to a love of mythology and all things fantasy. When I was younger, one of my favorite book series as "The Chronicles of Narnia" by C.S. Lewis. (They still are a favorite of mine.) My dad had older copies from when he was younger that I use to read all the time. Then one day he showed me a copy of "The Hobbit" by J.R.R. Tolkien and told me I should read it. I tried...but I never finished it despite watching the old animated version whenever it came on TV. (It's vastly different from the book version, but at the time I didn't realize so I thought I knew what happened in the book.) Flash forward to my sophomore year of high school when my nerdy theatre teacher decided to perform a play adaption of "The Hobbit" (which was also vastly different from the book as I later found out).

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Random Acts of Publicity Strikes Again

*I was supposed to post this Saturday evening, but unfortunately I was distracted by the TV. *cough* DOCTOR WHO *cough* I apologize for my lateness.*

Welcome to my third and final installment of Random Acts of Publicity week. (Again, click here for R.A.P FAQs and click for Tuesday's or Thursday's installments.) For this post, I'm going to focus on a few authors I've recently had the pleasure of meeting in person, as well as my top 3 reads of 2011.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

More Random Acts of Publicity

*Update: Still forgive my formatting issues! My tech-guy fiancee took a look, but he can't figure out what's wrong with the font or spacing issues either! Grrr, Blogger! DX*

This is my second installment of Random Acts of Publicity week. (If you missed my last post, click here to read about some awesome authors and click here to find out more about R.A.P.) Today I will share some more authors and their books that I have discovered here on the blog-o-sphere. (And come back Saturday for my post about authors I have met in person!)

You can find many things on the internet these days, including fantastic books you have never read. Then after finding said books, you can find their authors' websites and twitter accounts as well. And while you don't need to know the author and learn anything about the author to enjoy a book, I have found that it's often entertaining and allows me to enjoy the book even more.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Random Acts of Publicity

It's Random Acts of Publicity week! And what is R.A.P. you ask?

The 3rd Annual Random Acts of Publicity, September 6-9, is a week to celebrate your friend’s book, or your favorite book, by doing a Random Act of Publicity: Blog, Link, Like, Review, or Talk about the book . (BLLuRT it Out!) Click here for FAQs. 

So today I'm going to share with you some of my blogger friends who have books coming out soon:

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Ordered Reading: it's a compulsion!

I recently won a copy of author

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Spot of Murder & Mystery

"A Murder is Announced" by Agatha Christie, adapted for the stage by Leslie Darbon: The quiet English village of Clipping Cleghorn is all a buzz when an announcement appears in the local newspaper about a murder taking place at Little Paddocks. Miss Blacklock, the matriarchal home owner, dismisses the advertisement as a silly prank, but the house's other residents aren't so sure. As the dreaded hour approaches, other village members start to arrive at the house to see what will happen including the sleuthing busybody Miss Jane Marple. Mystery, murder, and mayhem ensue in this delightful 1950s style "whodunnit" production.